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white man's burden

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noun
the alleged duty of white colonizers to care for nonwhite Indigenous subjects in their colonial possessions.
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Origin of white man's burden

After a poem of the same title by Rudyard Kipling (1899)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022

How to use white man's burden in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for white man's burden

White man's burden

noun
the supposed duty of the White race to bring education and Western culture to the non-White inhabitants of their colonies
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Cultural definitions for white man's burden

white man's burden

A phrase used to justify European imperialism in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries; it is the title of a poem by Rudyard Kipling. The phrase implies that imperialism was motivated by a high-minded desire of whites to uplift people of color.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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